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First Cash Reports 42% Increase In Fourth Quarter Net Income

FIRST CASH FINANCIAL SERVICES, INC. UNAUDITED NON-GAAP FINANCIAL INFORMATION

The Company uses certain financial calculations, such as free cash flow, EBITDA and constant currency results, which are not considered measures of financial performance under U.S. generally accepted accounting principles ("GAAP"). Items excluded from the calculation of free cash flow, EBITDA and constant currency results are significant components in understanding and assessing the Company's financial performance. Since free cash flow, EBITDA and constant currency results are not measures determined in accordance with GAAP and are thus susceptible to varying calculations, free cash flow, EBITDA and constant currency results, as presented, may not be comparable to other similarly titled measures of other companies. Free cash flow, EBITDA and constant currency results should not be considered as alternatives to net income, cash flow provided by or used in operating, investing or financing activities or other financial statement data presented in the Company's condensed consolidated financial statements as indicators of financial performance or liquidity. Non-GAAP measures should be evaluated in conjunction with, and are not a substitute for, GAAP financial measures. 

Free Cash Flow

For purposes of its internal liquidity assessments, the Company considers free cash flow, which is defined as cash flow from the operating activities of continuing and discontinued operations reduced by purchases of property and equipment and net cash outflow from pawn and short-term/payday loan customer receivables. Free cash flow is commonly used by investors as a measure of cash generated by business operations that will be used to repay scheduled debt maturities and can be used to invest in future growth through new business development activities or acquisitions, repurchase stock, or repay debt obligations prior to their maturities. These metrics can also be used to evaluate the Company's ability to generate cash flow from business operations and the impact that this cash flow has on the Company's liquidity. The following table reconciles "net cash flow from operating activities" to "free cash flow" (in thousands):
  Twelve Months Ended
  December 31,
  2010 2009
Cash flow from operating activities (1) $ 73,645 $ 85,213
Cash flow from investing activities:    
Pawn and short-term loan receivables  (23,648)  (12,964)
Purchases of property and equipment  (18,385)  (15,376)
Free cash flow $ 31,612 $ 56,873
     

(1) Cash flow from operating activities in 2009 included approximately $15 million of non-recurring cash receipts and tax refunds from the discontinued Auto Master operation.

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